BNP Chairman Nick Griffin MEP has just caused a bit of a Twitter storm by publishing the address of a gay couple who sued a Christian B&B couple who refused them board.
I spend a lot of time on this blog defending the right of bigots and racists to say horrible things, online and in person. However, I think this superficially anodyne tweet might actually cross the line into territory I would not defend.
Why? Well, first, there is an invasion of privacy. Griffin is a public figure with a large Twitter following. The couple in question have a reasonable expectation that their address will not be broadcast.
More importantly, the tweet could be considered inciting violence and harassment. In a followup, Griffin said a ‘British Justice Team’ (whatever that is) should visit to give them ‘a bit of drama’. If it were my address that had been published, I would feel harassed and terrorised and probably go and stay elsewhere for a few days.
BNP supporters have taken to scrawling the party’s website onto toilet walls, presumably as part of some guerilla-marketing strategy. It has the odd effect of making me think of the BNP every time I take a dump.
Surely, the need to stoop to this rather pathetic level – graffitio on toilet walls next to cottagers’ phone numbers – would make such activists stop and think. Like the throatless smoker who still inhales via his tracheotomy, or the heroin addict who has to inject into his eyeball to get a decent hit, these campaigners seem to lack a certain self-awareness.